No Need To Shoot For The Stars

How are you doing? Are you feeling cooped up? Have you gotten some good reorganization done? Have you been pulling cards and sending packages? Some of you certainly are, and I’m not sure if it’s due to the pandemic slowing us down or the fact that baseball was around the corner right before all of this struck.

I’ve gotten several mailings in of late, all of them small surprises. They’ve been quite welcome, in that aspect, as they are doing their part to bring a bit of joy to my days. I’m hoping that I might be able to return that favor soon, as a few of you have piles here that I meant to get out before all of this went down.

One of the big surprises was from P-Town Tom of Waiting ‘Til Next Year. Unfortunately, I think that we might all be waiting until next year when it comes to baseball. I’d forgotten that I’d issued off a little stack to Peoria consisting of Cubs I’d found at the big TriStar show and some other random finds. Tom was one of the first people I traded with when I first started this blog, and as such he’s usually my default trader when it comes to Cubbies. His note said he’s temporarily out of Astros to send my way, so he headed over to Sportlots to find some oddballs from my list. Thanks Tom! You certainly didn’t have to do that, but I appreciate it.

Tom went straight for those that are dear to my stomach, er, heart – food issue cards! These ’84 Ralston Purina and ’86 Quaker Chewy Granola cards brought me to just 3 and 6 remaining in those sets. My oddball binder is quite pleased with the additions.

Tom even found one of those great 1992 Kellogg’s Corn Flakes All-Star lenticular cards for me, and brought me within a single card of the 1991 Pro-Visions inserts. I just need a Roger Clemens now.

The biggest bite that Tom made in one of my food-issue builds, though, was in the 1993 Hostess set. I dig this simple design, and have thought about recreating it for customs – perhaps minus the diagonal lines in the border. These 9 additions took my want list down to 14 cards out of the 32 card set. My favorites here are the Canseco and Eckersley. Thanks again, Tom!

A PWE floated in the door just over a week ago as well, and this one was full of customs from Nick V., as well as a pair of Sandlot inserts. I still need Alan, Benny, Ham, and Smalls, if you’re sitting on any of them. But the stars of this package were the customs Nick had piled up for me, including three of his Blue Note styled “album covers” at the bottom. Let’s take a closer look at the others.

I’ve loved Nick’s “what if the bar on ’56 was vertical?” customs since he first rolled them out, and this trio does not disappoint. A beautiful J.R., a lovely Roberto, and a delightful Roy Face. That sequence of The Baron of the Bullpen was shot for SI, and I’ve had it set aside for customs for a while. Of course Nick would appreciate the same shot. I also really love that ’78 of A.J. Hinch which follows the old manager cards from that set. Nick has used this design to make lovely cards of the Stanford alumni. Oh, and if memory serves me right, that overhead Clemente shot was taken at the ‘Dome, so props to Nick for finding that one.

Check it out, these even have full backs! It’s pretty cool that Nick dug up Hinch’s college stats for that card. I just wish there was a line for his managerial record. Ok, ok, I know I’m being picky.

This one was very much a surprise. Why, of all things, was there a Fenway postcard in my mailbox the other day? Well, that’s because SABR President Mark Armour decided to drop a little quarantine note my way. Fun!

That was followed the next day by another postcard! This one came from Steve Brightman and features a Negro League game being played in D.C. between the Washington Homestead Grays and the Newark Eagles. That’s Josh Gibson behind the plate and Mule Settles in the third base coaching box. Getting baseball postcards two days in a row had me thinking there was perhaps some sort of conspiracy to flood my mailbox with them. That hasn’t happened, but you’re more than welcome to send baseball postcards my direction, Houston-related or not. Thanks Steve!

I also received a large mailer from my pal Craig* featuring an eclectic mix of things. The Tim O’Brien book is a favorite of mine – I believe I read it for senior year English in high school as well as for my American Military History course in college. I gave my copy away some time ago, so it’ll be fun to revisit this one. That’s a delightful Numero Group release next to it, called Eccentric Soul, and it’s been fun to listen to while driving** around. There was a small packet of coins – a pair of WWII nickels, a British pound* and a Canadian two dollar coin, a button from the old country radio station here in town, and a pair of baseball-related items: a Sunshine Kids pin, and a Corpus Christi pin from their Blue Ghosts alternate weekend that honored the USS Lexington, docked in Corpus.

* It’s his birthday today! Happy Birthday, Craigers.
**Admittedly, the only functional CD player I have at the moment is in the old car I’m driving around.

Finally, there was another PWE from Jason of Hoarding Cardboard. He’d reached out on Twitter to see if I was still accepting mail, because he had pulled something that “fit [my] collection better.” That cryptic card turned out to be an Alex Bregman Home Run Challenge card from this year’s Topps set. I, uh, don’t think we’ll be seeing any winners from these cards, but this one is a winner in my book binder. Thanks Jason!

Thanks again to all of you who have graced my mailbox of late. I really appreciate it, and as Tom’s package will tell you – there’s no need to shoot for the stars. Stay safe out there.

2 Replies to “No Need To Shoot For The Stars”

  1. It’s pretty cool of someone to send you a book, even better when it comes with such a fun assortment of other items? Only one working CD player… kids these days!

  2. I thought about doing manager stats but I like the idea of the stats being complete and, at the time, expected AJ to be an active manager for a while longer. I’m also not sure how I’d do manager stats though in this layout.

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